The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is considering creating a fund to be used for unpaid arbitration awards. This would solve the problem of investors not recovering arbitration awards that are due to them. In 2013, a total of $62 million in awards went unpaid, which amounted to one in three awards, according to a study done by the Public Investors Arbitration Bar Association (PIABA). Many times the awards go unpaid because the brokerage firm or broker that they have sued, declare bankruptcy. But FINRA firms and brokers are regulated, so it should be expected that they be held to a higher standard. It proposes that FINRA members pay dues annually into a designated pool, amounting to about $100 per broker, to help compensate the award winners. The report also lays out a blueprint that says the pool could be created and maintained based on the average sum of unpaid claims the past five years. The money would be paid out annually. The existence of the fund is likely to increase the number of arbitration cases brought against brokers and brokerage firms, because more securities attorneys will be willing to take the cases if they know there is a guarantee the award will be paid out.

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